2 University of Miami Football Players Arrested for Sexual Battery

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Miami-Dade Corrections
    Jawand Blue and Alex Figueroa

    Two University of Miami football players have been arrested for sexual battery of a 17-year-old girl in a dorm room at the school's campus, police said Tuesday.

    Jawand Blue and Alexander Figueroa, both 20, were arrested early Tuesday morning, Coral Gables Police said.

    Blue was being held on $10,000 bond Tuesday, jail records showed. Figueroa, who also faces a charge of possession of a stolen or fictitious driver's license, was being held on $15,000 bond. It was unknown whether either has an attorney.

    For some students, the incident highlights a problem on college campuses.

    "There seems to be an epidemic of sexual assaults nationally on college campuses," said student Vanessa Jaramillo. "I know when I go out with a group of girls, we always watch out for each others' drinks, be careful, don't leave your drink anywhere."

    UM student Rich Bindernagel said he was in a biology class with Blue.

    "He seemed to be a good classmate, we had a pretty small class of about 30 or 40 students," Bindernagel said. "He seemed like a good guy, yeah, just like any other football players."

    The alleged act happened in the early morning hours of July 5, when Blue and Figueroa brought the girl to a dorm room at Pearson Hall at 5185 Ponce De Leon Boulevard, police said.

    The victim reported the incident to University of Miami Police, and Coral Gables Police investigated.

    According to the arrest reports, Blue and Figueroa admitted to buying and administering several alcoholic beverages for the victim and bringing her back to the dorm room.

    They admitted to performing sex acts on her without her consent, the reports said.

    "The victim was physically helpless to resist," the reports said.

    Figueroa, from Virginia, and Blue, from Boca Raton, are both sophomores and were both linebackers for the Hurricanes but were dismissed from the team Tuesday, UM's Director of Athletics Blake James said in a statement.

    “Earlier today, I permanently dismissed Jawand Blue and Alexander Figueroa from the UM football team. The University has also suspended the students from school and barred them from all campus facilities while the University conducts an internal investigation and continues to cooperate with local law enforcement," James said. "Any allegation of a sexual assault is extremely serious, and the University will not tolerate conduct that threatens the sanctity and safety of our students and our campus. We hold all of our students – especially student athletes – to the highest standards of moral conduct. The University is committed to maintaining a safe campus environment for all."

    UM President Donna Shalala also issued a statement saying the university is cooperating with the investigation.

    "The safety and welfare of our students is fundamental to our mission as a university. We have zero tolerance for sexual assault and gender-based violence," she said. "We will fully and compassionately support the victim of sexual assault.  I have spoken to her myself and reassured her of our full support."

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